Proposition 65 (also known as The Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986) is a California law that was passed in 1986 to protect the water supply from chemicals that can increase the risk of cancer. It is the law that promotes clean drinking water and ensures that food does not contain toxic substances that cause cancer or are toxic to reproduction.
In its development, Proposition 65 is a law that requires all businesses to warn California customers about significant exposures to chemicals that may cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductive harm. While this proposition does not apply in Europe, Alhambra Guitars has implemented it on all of its guitars, establishing clear and clear communication of the dangers between manufacturer-consumer.
What substances are included in Prop 65?
Proposition 65 (Prop 65) includes more than 850 substances currently listed and is updated annually. Most of the substances listed are used in pesticides, toys, clothing, solvents, household products and additives. You can consult the substances included in the Prop 65 list on the following link:
And the limits established for each of them, from which the warning label is required for exceeding the level of "significant risk":
Guitar makers have traditionally used UREA FORMOL when gluing plywood boards. This is a type of resin or adhesive whose main property is that, once molded, it does not soften with heat, but hardens due to its internal structure.
Since formaldehyde is included in the list of cancerous substances, Alhambra Guitars has collaborated with its suppliers and collaborators to stop using this resin in its products. To this end, and in collaboration with AIDIMME (Instituto Tecnológico Metalmecánico, Mueble, Madera, Embalaje y Afines) in Valencia, we started work on adapting our processes in 2018. AIDIMME is also an approved collaborator of CARB (Californian Air Resource Board), an agency in charge of protecting the public from the harmful effects of air pollution and developing programs and actions to combat climate change.
CARB is part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
ALHAM-GRAM ECO PLYWOOD Project.
In April 2018, we were informed that the EPA was going to implement the Prop 65 environmental regulation that would go into effect on June 1st, 2018.
Alhambra Guitars establishes an action plan to ensure that its products comply with the regulation.
On the one hand, the company seeks certified suppliers and purchases NAF materials to be able to serve guitars in the short term of 2 months, being Alhambra Guitars the first Spanish guitar builder to send its instruments to the USA complying with Prop 65 regulations in August 2018.
Meanwhile, Alhambra Guitars alongside with its collaborators and regular suppliers, develop the tools and procedures to be able to be certified and certify their own plywoods developed exclusively for Alhambra Guitars, which are registered. By doing so, we have managed to completely stop using resins containing formaldehyde, switching to water-based glues with no added formaldehyde in their composition.
After submitting the project to the US CARB Agency, we received the first NAF(TSCA Title VI Compliant) accreditation certificate for our veneering processes, which we call ALHAM-GRAM ECO PLYWOOD, dated February 2019, a certificate that we have just renewed in February 2021.
All the documentation related to this project is available on the following link:
Is it safe to buy an Alhambra guitar?
Yes, Proposition 65 does not prohibit the sale of products containing these chemicals, it only requires the presence of warnings on the product, packaging and documentation supplied with the product. A Proposition 65 warning means that a company has evaluated the exposure and concluded that the level measured is "no significant risk".
For this reason, it is the responsibility of Alhambra Guitars to inform all of its California customers if the products we sell contain any of the chemicals listed on the Proposition 65 warning list. Customers should see this information before making a purchase.
Alhambra Guitars: Formaldehyde free
Alhambra Guitars, faithful to its commitment to respect for the environment, wants to put on record that not only applies this process to the guitars sold to California, but has implemented it to all its production, which is distributed in more than 70 countries around the world.
With this seal we ensure that we comply with the regulations required by the EPA and that all Alhambra guitars use water-based glues with no added formaldehyde in their composition.